Gene Ovnicek

Gene Ovnicek


GPF-RMF ~ Guild of Professional Farriers - Registered Master Farrier

CNBBT, CNBF, CLS, CE, CI (With the Equine Lameness Prevention Organization)


      Gene Ovnicek is nationally and internationally recognized as a farrier, clinician and researcher.  A pioneer in the study of wild horse hoof form and function, Gene has combined his 50 years of farrier experience with the information from other scientific research as a foundation for treating and preventing equine lameness.  Gene has been involved in research projects with Dr. Robert Bowker (formerly of Michigan State University) and Dr. Barbara Page of the Equine Wellness Foundation.  Gene is currently participating in several ongoing research projects with the Equine Lameness Prevention Organization, as well as his own anecdotal studies.  Gene's ever evolving Natural Balance® information packed presentations have been featured at some of the most prestigious farrier and veterinarian conferences in the world.  In addition to the research projects, teaching and his advisory position with Equine Digit Support System, Inc., Gene still operates a complete farrier practice ranging from performance horses to lameness management and consultation.

      Gene Ovnicek and the Natural Balance® information have been published in the American Farrier’s Journal (AFJ), Anvil Magazine, TrailBlazer magazine, Horse Illustrated, Western Horseman, the European Farrier’s Journal, EQUUS and several associated press articles.  He has published chapters in major hoof care text books such as “Adams Lameness in Horses”, “Diagnosis and Management of Lameness in the Horse”, “The Veterinary Clinics of North America”, as well as several self published works and video projects, including the "Natural Balance Hoof Care" education series and "Hope for Soundness" book.

      As a clinician, Gene has been invited to share this information with a wide range of groups and activities.  A few include:

  • 1994 & 2003 Bluegrass Laminitis Symposium
  • 1995 American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention
  • 1997 Guild of Professional Farriers Convention
  • 1998 Colorado Veterinary Medical Association Conference
  • 1999 Wyoming Veterinary Medical Association Conference
  • Annual Colorado State University C.E. Courses for Veterinarians and Farriers
  • Annual University of California at Davis C.E. Courses for Veterinarians and Farriers
  • 1998 Heumphreus Memorial Conference at University of California at Davis
  • Regular TFP Sponsored Farrier/Vet Conferences in England
  • 1998 & 2002 Ashbrook Farrier/Vet Conference in the UK
  • 1999 - 11th Congress for Farriers & Vets of France
  • 1999 – Various Sponsored Farrier/Vet Conferences in Australia
  • 1999 & 2000 – Venezuela Laminitis Symposium
  • 1997 & 2000 – Annual Rochester Lameness Conference
  • 2001 Meeting of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association
  • 2001 Meeting of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons
  • 2002 American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association Conference
  • 1998-2006 Annual Soundness Festival Clinician
  • 2004 “Shoeing for Balance” Conference in the UK
  • 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009 & 2010 - Annual International Hoof Care Summit
  • 2005 – 9th Congress of Equine Medicine & Surgery, Geneva, Switzerland
  • 2007 – American Farrier’s Association Convention Speaker
  • 2007 – North Carolina Veterinary Conference
  • 2009 - International E.L.P.O. Conference
  • 2010 - British Equine Veterinary Association Conference



  • Guild of Professional Farrier Award of Achievement – 2000
  • Southeastern Horseshoers on Education – Farrier of the Year Award - 2001
  • Hoof Registry of Germany – Recognition Award for Contributions in Hoof Health for the Natural Balance Shoe – 2004
  • Outstanding Presentation Award for “Optimizing Laminitis Treatment” – Intl. Hoof Care Summit 2006



  • Registered Master Farrier – Guild of Professional Farriers
  • E.L.P.O. - Certified Natural Balance Barefoot Trimmer (CNBBT)
  • E.L.P.O. - Certified Natural Balance Farrier (CNBF)
  • E.L.P.O. - Certified Lameness Specialist (CLS)
  • E.L.P.O. - Certified Examiner (CE)
  • E.L.P.O. - Certified Instructor (CI)


Gene currently lives and works in the Colorado Springs, Colorado area. Many of his speaking engagements and roles as an instructor are tied into the Equine Lameness Prevention Organization.  However, Gene still does independent clinics where he focuses on advanced Natural Balance theory, lameness treatment and "Leverage Testing" using the Krosscheck LT device.  Please inquire with EDSS, Inc. (719.372.7463) if you are intested in organizing or participating in a clinic with Gene.

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